Living in a college-sponsored Middle East and Islamic Studies house, Natalie Zink ’14, connects with her Arabic professor and house mentor Abdulkareem Said Ramadan through extracurricular events.
“My first real memory with Prof. Ramadan was when I went to his office hours while I was taking his Arabic 101 class. I was stressed because I did not understand Arabic grammar. Not only did he clarify the concept but he also made me feel relaxed, much less stressed about everything. Now three years later, I go to him for grad school advice, grammar clarification, and life chats," Zink said.
At a recent event for the Middle East and Islamic Studies theme house, Prof. Ramadan came to the house to teach the students his personal Syrian-style hummus recipe. He prepared pounds of hummus and shared stories about his culture and life with the students who were there.
Having this close relationship with Ramadan inspired Zink’s career path and provides her with insight as she applies to graduate schools
"The key to having a good relationship with you professors is to remember that they are people too. As much as they can help you in regards to academic development, you as a student can help them to plan events on campus that will inspire other students to take interest in their subjects. These relations can really be mutually beneficial," Zink said.
This close relationship between professors and students, particularly within the MEIS department, was mentioned in a USA Today piece written by Kasey Varner ’14.